When can a highway project in Texas become a global project? When some high-tech collaboration construction technology is involved.

AECOM Technology Corp., which provides professional technical and management support services for public and private sector clients, www.aecom.com, Los Angeles, Calif., has announced it is using ProjectWise from Bentley Systems, www.bentley.com, Exton, Pa., to connect teams in two countries and provide engineering services for Texas State Highway 130 Segments five and six in Austin and San Antonio.

AECOM is responsible for designing a 27-mile, four-lane divided tollway with two multidirectional interchanges, 14 grade separations, and 31 miles of frontage road. In addition, a number of engineering services will be under the responsibilities of AECOM. This includes roadway geometrics; turnarounds; mainlane and ramp toll sites and gantrys; bridge layouts and details; Federal Emergency Management Agency studies, and urban storm sewer design.

The project collaboration and engineering software from Bentley helps to complete the final design specifications. In particular, it will help coordinate the off-site project team, which includes approximately 120 employees on the team working in 20 different offices throughout North America.

With major design elements due in the matter of 18 months, AECOM says the technology helped to connect the team members. In the end, this helped establish one integrated approach for design and document versioning. The company says the technology has saved the project more than $5.6 million in travel reduction and productivity gains, which is 80 times the original investment.

With project completion expected in November 2012, AECOM says the job is a great example of how integrated technology plays a strong role in reducing time and costs for its clients.